Middlesbrough still have Championship play-offs in sight as Preston North End trip approaches

Middlesbrough are one of a fortunate few going into the final game of the season, in that they still have something to play for.

By Tom Sandells
Friday, 6th May 2022, 12:30 pm

Despite often being touted as the best division in the world, the Championship has many of its important places tied up ahead of the final game of the season.

Derby County, Peterborough United and Barnsley are all to be relegated to League One and Fulham and Bournemouth have wrapped up promotion, the former securing the title.

All that is left to play for is the final two play-off spots. Fifth and sixth are still up for grabs with four teams in with a chance of securing a post-season.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Middlesbrough manager Chris Wilder.

Sheffield United and Luton Town remain in pole position though Middlesbrough and Millwall can both jump into the top six should they secure points and results go their way.

Boro are seventh, two points behind Luton in sixth with superiror goal difference, thanks to a 7-0 humbling fo teh Hatters by Fulham as they clinched the title on Monday.

That means they must go all out for a win at Deepdale to give themselves any hope of making the top six.

In Chris Wilder as their manager, Boro have a man who knows how to win promotion, from any division. Wilder saw his Northampton Town side into League One before joining Sheffield United who he led to League One and Championship success.

There was a clear sign of intent from the Boro board when they moved to bring the Yorkshireman in with the club in 14th, back in November.

Read More

Read More
Preston North End's 'Cumbrian Cannavaro' is to leave Deepdale this summer after ...

The Teesside club were not happy with just surviving and brought in one of the most sought after bosses for this level.

So much so, that he has also recently been linked with the Burnley job in the top flight which Wilder, eventually, distanced himself from.

The 54-year-old initially seemed keen not to kill fo specualtion before announcing he was ‘all in’ at the Riverside, having had conversations with Boro chairman Steve Gibson.

PNE boss Ryan Lowe is expecting a tough game on Saturday, 12:30pm, at Deepdale but feels the pressure is on the the visitors, not that the pressure to succeed will not be there for the Lilywhites.

He said: “I've got a lot of respect for Chris and Alan Knill who is his assistant, they're good people and a fantastic coach and manager.

"They have done unbelievably well. Middlesbrough are a fantastic club who have been there and have history in the Premier League and Chris is obviously trying to take them back there.

"We have to pay them respect because of what they're doing and what they're trying to do but ultimately we have to worry about what we can do.

"The pressure is on them to try and win and get into the play-offs and hope that results go their way.

"There is pressure on us to go and win and send our fans home happy in the last game of the season. That's our challenge.

"It's a little bit different to what they're trying to do but we have to do what's best for us to try and win a game of football.”